West Ham supporters have been drowning their sorrows in the Transfer Tavern in the last few days after seeing their side easily beaten 4-1 by Champions League chasing Liverpool in the Premier League on Saturday.
David Moyes’ men went into their clash with the Merseyside giants off the back of a vital 2-0 success over Watford in their preceding league encounter, a result which put further distance between themselves and the division’s bottom three. However, the Hammers slipped to just three points clear of the danger zone on Saturday as goals from Emre Can, Mohamed Salah, Roberto Firmino, and Sadio Mane secured a routine victory for Jurgen Klopp’s side, with Michail Antonio’s second half effort all the travelling West Ham fans had to cheer on a disappointing day at Anfield.
Consequently, there have been many frustrated Hammers fans in the Tavern in recent times, several of whom have already forgotten Saturday’s hammering and are instead focusing on their team’s vital trip to fellow strugglers Swansea City this weekend.
In the meantime though, there has been much for our resident West Ham supporters to get their teeth into, not least recent reports that Manchester United defender Matteo Darmian could be on his way out of Old Trafford this summer.
Serie A champions Juventus are one side reportedly keen on the 28-year-old, yet Moyes must seek to raid his ex-employers and launch an ambitious move to lure the £10.8 million-rated ace (as per Transfermarkt) to the London Stadium, in a bid to bolster their defensive ranks ahead of a possible European push next season.
Ultimately, it’s clear that Moyes’ men are in need of defensive reinforcements over the summer having shipped 50 goals so far in the Premier League this season – only Stoke (54) have conceded more.
And the full back department is one area that needs serious attention during the close season.
Aaron Cresswell and Arthur Masuaku are doing well down the left-hand side, but the right-hand side remains a cause for concern, with Pablo Zabaleta in the twilight of his career, and Sam Byram not yet at the level required to play top-flight football week in, week out.
And that is where Darmian comes in.
The 28-year-old has played 80 times for Manchester United since moving to Old Trafford back in 2015, and while he hasn’t always been a regular under Jose Mourinho, he has done a job when called upon – he even kept Luke Shaw out of the side for a time.
Significantly though, the Italy international can play down either flank, giving Moyes plenty of options to either use him as an out-an-out right back, as a wing-back down either side, or possibly as part of a back three – his versatility would be an asset.
And while some West Ham fans will point to the fact that they are just four points clear of danger, and as such very much remain in relegation contention, it’s also worth noting that they aren’t that far away from potentially securing European football either, given they are just seven points adrift of Burnley in seventh, which could get Europa League football were any of the top six to win the FA Cup.
Thus, it may only need a handful of changes over the summer to turn the Hammers into a top seven challenger, and plugging a clear gap in their side down the right-hand side would certainly go some way to doing that.
And with United reportedly only wanting £8.75 million for Darmian, it’s an ambitious move the Hammers must make over the summer.
West Ham fans… what do you think? Let us know!